lie nielsen show is coming to town, what to get???

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Forum topic by KenBry posted 814 days ago 907 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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449 posts in 946 days

814 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: plane chisel

The Lie Neilsen show is comming to Phoenix, AZ (mesa) this weekend. I have a budget of $600+ or – a few to spend. That being said I am torn on what I should get.

I have No hand planes, crappy old chisels and no hand saws. Basically I have bought allot of good power tools but have yet to invest in the hand tools. Well, I am getting ready to bite the bullet and start heading down that path.

Given this starting budget what would you get from the Lie Nielson line?

I am looking at a:
block plane (Standard Angle Adjustable Mouth Block Plane)
No. 4 1/2 Smooth Plane
Low Angle Jointer or No. 7 Jointer Plane
The Plane Set ( a bit over my budget but I can maybe stretch to it) It includes all the above.
Set of 5 Chisels
Dovetail saw
medium sholder plane

I can’t afford them all but I am trying to narrow down my initial purchase. Also I am open to other ideas if anyone has suggestions.

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

19 replies so far

View PurpLev's profile


8473 posts in 2148 days

#1 posted 814 days ago

a block plane usually gets the most use, other than that, the answer really depends on what sort of work you do, and you and only you can answer this. if you tend to reach for chisels, and want better quality chisels, then get those. if you want to start milling wood with hand planes, then get a #7, #4 planes, if you want to saw wood to size by hand, or want to do joinery by hand, get some saws for that… it really boils down to what work you want to be doing.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View KenBry's profile


449 posts in 946 days

#2 posted 814 days ago

The above mentioned tools I kinda consider the main ones I “think” I should have reguardless of the type of craft I am leaning toward. At least that’s my thought process. I figure I will always need one item or the other on that list to get more out of my work.

I could be wrong, I am still very much a novice.

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

View Dallas's profile


2673 posts in 986 days

#3 posted 814 days ago

IIRC, Phoenix has a great flea market or two. I would go out to them and find some handsome Stanley, Sargent or MF planes to get you started for @ $20 ea. The reasoning is, you are going to have to tune a new plane anyway, you might as well get one that’s built for using, not being pretty.

At the show, buy a set of good chisels, and a sharpening system. My reasoning is that it is hard to tell a good useful chisel from a junky one if you’ve never used them before. Plus, you are still going to have to sharpen them and tune them.

Too many people, IMO, forget that the purchase of the tools you mention is only the beginning. You also have to learn how to sharpen them and take care of them and use them.

You may also want to look at marking gauges, measuring tools, squares and other doo-dads to make your life easier.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View KenBry's profile


449 posts in 946 days

#4 posted 814 days ago

I actually have purchased the sharpening items already and know the art of sharpening well. I have a full range of water stones and a DMT flattening board. I also a good bench grinder and 100 grit wheel on it when I need to get a piece shapped back up. I have to sharpen my present equipment so I bought these a while back. (lathe tools)

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3185 posts in 2460 days

#5 posted 814 days ago

Ken, KEN!!!!! You’re toast. Go to a monastary. It’s your only hope.
You’ll take out a second mortgage if you go to that show. (Tee Hee!!)


View KenBry's profile


449 posts in 946 days

#6 posted 814 days ago

HEHE, My wife wouldn’t appreciate me turning into a monk. I got the green light from her to get what I got, so I am doing ok. I know the hobby is a money pit. But at least I am turning out items that people appreciate and enjoy. :) Now back to the question, What to get? ! ? ! ? !

Dallas, what is IIRC?

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

View Dallas's profile


2673 posts in 986 days

#7 posted 814 days ago

IIRC = If I Recall Correctly.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View KenBry's profile


449 posts in 946 days

#8 posted 814 days ago

Ahh, Yea, I have been hitting some of the flea markets latly, but to be honest, allot of these people are NUTS on what they want for older planes. $200 for a #4 stanley and it looks abused and in need of work. The problem is allot of these folks that sell at these know what they got and they think they have a gold mine rather than a coper mine.

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

View ChuckV's profile


2258 posts in 2026 days

#9 posted 814 days ago

When I went to one of the LN shows, I used it as an opportunity to get some hands-on experience with the tools. I did not buy anything there. If I did, I would have paid state sales tax – I am not sure what your sales tax situation is.

There were some free magazines at the show that had a card for free shipping if used within a certain time after the show – I think it was a month. I used this free shipping to place an order the next day, paid no sales tax, and had the package in two days.

This is also a good way to take a little time to think over what you are going to purchase.

Have fun at the show!

-- “A clear conscience is the sure sign of a bad memory.” ― Mark Twain

View Dallas's profile


2673 posts in 986 days

#10 posted 814 days ago

Then go to the smaller, lesser known flea markets. Or watch on eBay, or Craigs List or in the thrifty Nickel paper.
there are a lot of options.

Then again think of it this way: To buy a plane you want it to be as well built and as well engineered as possible. Obviously, a well engineered piece is going to have beautiful lines but may not be beautiful to the eye, (Ever look at a Duroc hog?). LN planes are great planes, as far as I know, since I only own one, (and it’s a low angle block plane), but my low angle Stanley built between 1909 and 1930 still is easier to use and holds and edge much better along with being easier to set up.

The choice is yours, but unless you are use to working with hand tools you won’t be able to appreciate the differences.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View Manitario's profile


2178 posts in 1382 days

#11 posted 814 days ago

rough situation you’re in Ken…I’d hate to have $600 to spend on LN tools! I’ve started off the same way; a lot of power tools, but I’m only just starting to get some hand tools. Personally, what I find useful, even if you’re not big into hand tools is a smoothing plane, a block plane with an adjustable mouth are a good place to start. I wouldn’t be too quick to spend the $450 on the LN jointer; their low angled jack plane is a good investment though, especially with a couple of extra blades to grind a higher bevel angle on. I’ve looked at the LN chisels; they’re expensive and probably worth every penny they charge, but you can get some pretty decent chisels from elsewhere for cheaper; eg. the Narex chisels from Lee Valley. Same goes for the low angled jack plane; Lee Valley has their own version for cheaper than LN which works really well.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Loren's profile


6741 posts in 2147 days

#12 posted 814 days ago

Get the 4 1/2 and the large shoulder plane unless you intend
to do only smallish pieces. The mass of the larger shoulder
plane is essential to its function.

I would skip the block plane personally. I hardly use them
and they are far to light for chatter-free cuts in end-grain.
Maybe I have big hands, but I use a 4 1/2 one-handed
instead often enough.

I’d skip the high-end jointer planes and the dovetail saw
until you’ve gained experience with a Bailey #7 and
cut dovetails with a bowsaw and/or a dozuki.

The L-N chisels are said to be very fine. Japan chisels
are quite nice too, especially for softer woods. I recommend
having at least two sets of chisels, one for pounding on
and one for fine work and paring. I am skeptical of the
resilience of any unhooped chisel when used as I use
a chisel with a hammer.

One thing to be said for L-N tools is the resale value is
very strong, so there’s not much risk that you won’t
recoup most of your investment if you find the tool is
not right for your style of work.

The side rabbet planes don’t get used too much but they
do a cut no other tool does very well, imo. Not knowing
what you intend to build though it is difficult to make
exacting recommendations.

Also, the purported superiority of low angle planes in working
end grain is a marketing ploy. I have a L-N low angle
jack and seldom use it. I usually just grab a smoother
set up for a fine cut and use that.

View KenBry's profile


449 posts in 946 days

#13 posted 814 days ago

Yea, I am leaning toward the 4 1/2 and chisel set at the moment. They equal my budget and it would keep the wife happy if I don’t exceed it.

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

View KenBry's profile


449 posts in 946 days

#14 posted 812 days ago

I have been doing allot of research on Planes and the like since I posted this. I honestly thought that Veritas wasn’t much to consider and that Lie Neilson was the Caddy to get. (don’t ask me where I got that opinion from. I don’t remember) Well….. I have been reading allot and studying up on them and find that maybe I should also consider Veritas tools. Save afew bucks in the mean time. Still gonna go to the show and look and play but Might not buy a thing…

Thanks to those few of you that took the time to make me do some thinking :)

-- Ken, USAF MSgt, Ret.

View Farkled's profile


23 posts in 815 days

#15 posted 812 days ago

I went to the San Diego event recently to do two things: check out their saws and to look at a bronze # 3.

The #3 is glorious piece of gear and I will have one – some day.

Their saws totes are just way too small & skinny for my hands.

Kevin Glen-Drake of Glen-Drake Tools was there demonstrating his saws. He spent close to 1/2 hour watching embarrass myself at sawing but gently correcting me the whole time. I bought his dovetail saw (the single handle one) because it fits my hand (it’s basically a large gents saw) and just because I appreciated the lessons. The saw is not magical but it is as good as anything on the market. If he is there, look at it.

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